Corporate Partner Win
PSYDEH and corporate partner USA-based PopSockets produce an innovative success with our new rights-oriented factory worker educational initiative.
What is the Project
We invite workers and their employers to take greater responsibility for their own safe working conditions by helping them to think creatively on ways to improve conditions in a human-led, sustainable way. For example, workers are taught effective leadership skills needed to do things like resolve conflicts, build community within teams, and improve worker-management communication channels.
Our training of line managers at PopSockets’ partner factory XB in Tijuana, Mexico was pursued pursuant to the company’s membership in the Fair Labor Association (FLA) requiring that associates engage with civil society organizations (CSOs). When seeking their CSO partners, PopSockets looks for outfits with a strong background in training and capacity-building that could deliver training to workers on human rights-related issues. Once PSYDEH was selected, we collectively decided it was smart, innovative even, to train line managers on soft skills that would help them exercise their human rights as enshrined in the PopSockets and XB Codes of Conduct such that they would also encourage the same of those they manage.
Benefits delivered were measured both quantitatively and qualitatively through a post-training survey and a series of interviews. Performance indicators focused on students’ assessments of their own behavior and how that behavior changed through the training process. Workshop lead trainers, Jorge Echeverría (PSYDEH General Coordinator) and Katie Freund (PSYDEH Strategic Consultant) found good evidence of such change, for example:
♦“Students could think critically about the application of values to the workplace code of conduct and were able to discuss how they would react to situations involving each element of the code.”
♦“All workers who responded to the post-training survey intend to seek out additional leadership training, and all who were interviewed by phone said that they were sharing parts of what they had learned with their groups.”
♦“All students who did phone or Zoom interviews could identify a specific anecdote or a change in behavior in the past months that reflected the leadership values.”
Marissa Garcia, PopSockets’ Social Compliance & Sustainability Manager and overall project manager states,
The project was a success despite the challenges it faced because of two facts: (1) [Worker] students evidently began altering their behavior at the workplace in a positive manner as a direct result of the content of the training. This fulfilled one of the two main strategic objectives of the project. (2) The project’s trajectory and outputs can serve as a template for future training of a similar nature in partnership with PSYDEH.
What this collaboration means to PSYDEH
This project described further in this case study demonstrates our ability to help corporate partners and their workers create a win-win with rights-oriented work. Moreover, and as PSYDEH-PopSockets project-lead Mahathi Kumar states, “[t]his partnership helps us to expand our reach across the Republic (and soon we hope across the Global South and the Americas) and is a great way to integrate learnings from our British Council’s Active Citizens training with our intellectual property in the form of a unique values-based, adult leader empowerment method, showing how such education-empowerment activities are as useful for factory workers, as they are for rural women and their communities.”
Who is PopSockets
PopSockets, a USA company with a global reach making grips, mounts, and wallets for digital devices, works with FLA to engage civil society in a variety of areas. Civil society organizations’ programming helps to improve working conditions in partner factories in Mexico, China, and the USA. PopSockets has partnered previously with nonprofits to provide educational programs for their production facilities (primarily in China) and will look to expand with PSYDEH our educational offering we pioneered in Tijuana, MX to the USA and potentially China in 2022-2023.
Who is Fair Labor Association
Since 1999, FLA has helped improve the lives of millions of workers around the world. As a collaborative effort of socially responsible companies, universities, and civil society organizations, FLA creates lasting solutions to abusive labor practices by offering tools and resources to companies, delivering training to factory workers and management, conducting due diligence through independent assessments, and advocating for greater accountability and transparency from companies, manufacturers, factories and others involved in global supply chains.